Posted by on

By: Lucy Dabbs, Georges P. Vanier Secondary School, participant of the 2017 Beijing International Education Exchange (BIEE) Summer Camp.

Deoxyribonucleic acid, the carrier of all genetic information, containing the fundamental characteristics that make us unique. Today, I stared at a clumpy white blob floating in a test tube of blue raspberry gatorade that was my DNA. I looked around the classroom at the other students examining their own white clumpy blobs,and smiled at this awesome opportunity within the Beijing Royal school. Today was a learning day.

Having the whole day to try different classrooms really allowed us to have more freedom with our day. We could choose to not go to class, take an always needed nap, have some down time, wander around the track with f...

Category: Student Blog
Lucy Dabbs, umbrella hat
Posted by on

By: Lucy Dabbs, Georges P. Vanier Secondary School, participant of the 2017 Beijing International Education Exchange (BIEE) Summer Camp.

By the time we reach the great temple with Mao's portrait, the poncho has come off and I am now welcoming the rain upon my clothes.

As we enter one, then two security checkpoints, and make our way through the square towards the forbidden city, I develop a goal. I notice numerous locals wearing rainbow umbrella hats, about half the size of a regular umbrella and worn with a band around the forehead. I want one.

I decide that I need to have one and make it my mission to obtain one. I love the colour rainbow. This is because I cannot choose, I love all colours and I love diversity and I love standing out. I want this umbrella,...

Category: Student Blog
Lucy Dabbs with Panda
Posted by on

By: Lucy Dabbs, Georges P. Vanier Secondary School, participant of the 2017 Beijing International Education Exchange (BIEE) Summer Camp.

Sleep deprivation is something most teenagers experience at some point in their years, usually during the school year when procrastination is common and getting homework done early is not. We stay up late on our phones with no regard to how we're going to feel the next day, because we know we have the weekend to sleep in and stock up on sleep.

At the Beijing Royal School, it is like being on school time, the schedule fills every hour of the day. We go to sleep late and get up early, especially on the days we have outings. By the time Day 6 comes, we are all pretty run down, tired of cafeteria food and tired of the heat and tired in...

Category: Student Blog
Lucy Dabbs
Posted by on

By: Lucy Dabbs, Georges P. Vanier Secondary School, participant of the 2017 Beijing International Education Exchange (BIEE) Summer Camp.

After we are nourished and briefly rested on the bus ride, it’s time to walk around a massive shopping centre for 4 hours! I was prepared to go shopping, and am very glad to hear we were aloud to go off independently if we met back for dinner.

The first store I go into is a clothing store, and my first hour is spent trying on clothes and getting used to the different sizes, which I find to be much smaller than Western sizing. I do like the styles of clothing though, they seem a lot more colorful than our boring gray clothes back home.

I pull myself from the enticing fashions and explore the rest of the mall with a friend fro...

Category: Student Blog
Lucy Dabbs, Great Wall of China
Posted by on

By: Lucy Dabbs, Georges P. Vanier Secondary School, participant of the 2017 Beijing International Education Exchange (BIEE) Summer Camp.

People surrounding you, pressing in on all sides, hot bodies brushing against one another. A sea of orange shirts soaked with sweat, people speaking different languages all around you. You are standing on a steep incline, on stone steps about a foot high and half a foot wide. Somebody trying to squeeze past on your left knocks you off balance, your heel goes off the edge of the step and you waver backwards. You catch yourself just before you teeter into the person behind you, a glance over your shoulder showing a bad potential for the domino effect if someone were to fall.

Your feet anxiously want to move, you move your head from s...

Category: Student Blog
Mariam Ali
Posted by on

By Mariam Ali, Simon Fraser University, winner of the 2017 Stories from Abroad Scholarship.

It has now been two months since I came back from Europe, and five months since I finished my exchange in Strasbourg. I spent my summer travelling around the continent, visiting exchange friends in their countries and exploring their cities and villages with them. It was hard for me to come back to Vancouver after all of these adventures; I was crying as the day of my departure arrived and passed. I miss the lifestyle that I had in France, the short commutes, visiting other cities conveniently, being close to everything, the good food (especially the cheese). I also miss my exchange friends; I often watch them on Facebook as they graduate, travel and pursue new opportunities. Most o...

Category: Student Blog
Sean Paul Veltmeyer
Posted by on

By: Sean Paul Veltmeyer, Langara College, winner of the 2017 Stories from Abroad Scholarship.

Sunday morning I wake up to vibrations and the sound of jackhammers. Several minutes of shaking pass and I lose any hope of reprieve from the cacophony. Down a floor I turn a corner to find that the hallway to the gym, functional just yesterday, has overnight turned into an impassible rubbish heap; full of smashed tiles and debris. It appears I have discovered the source of the jackhammering. It’s sunny outside and there is much to see so I settle for a walk in the city.

Within steps I’m perspiring, but, despite the heat and humidity, there is a pleasant breeze and the air is palatable. A blue sky, green trees, and brown and grey buildings with colourful (often red) signs m...

Category: Student Blog
Lenelle Kutzner, Reichstag Building, Berlin, Germany
Posted by on

By: Lenelle Jordan Kutzner, University of Victoria, winner of the 2017 Stories from Abroad Scholarship.

Life after study abroad; it’s almost as confusing as while you’re away. I find when I’m returning from trips, I get in a mindset to go home. It becomes a peaceful bittersweet departure, as opposed to just bitter or just sweet. It’s amazing to return to familiarity, be reunited with friends, and finally be still as opposed to constantly on the go. However, I found I was left with a ‘what’s next’ feeling. I had a very acute awareness of what my life suddenly consisted of, or rather, didn’t consist of. No school. No travelling. No job. Just me, myself, and all the still very fresh lessons, memories, and even regrets that may have surfaced. Travelling not only expands the mi...

Category: Student Blog
Lucy Dabbs, Chinese paper cutting
Posted by on

By: Lucy Dabbs, Georges P. Vanier Secondary School, participant of the 2017 Beijing International Education Exchange (BIEE) Summer Camp.

Each classroom holds a new set of students, and a whole new set of people to meet from multiple different countries. Throughout the day I learn numerous traditional Chinese Art and technical skills while laughing and getting to know the people in my class. Trying new things together is a great way to make friends.

After lunch I do paper cutting and Chinese ink painting. Patience is not my strongest suit so I don’t end up creating exquisite masterpieces, but I learn some cool techniques.

Soon it’s dinnertime, and I meet back with our group to hear about the different classes they took. When I finish eating, I head out to the...

Category: Student Blog
Cheryl Olvera at Bat Out of Hell The Musical
Posted by on

By Cheryl Olvera, Simon Fraser University, winner of the 2017 Stories from Abroad Scholarship.

Ah, Vancouver. What can I say? I love you and I’ve missed you, but I’m so so sad to be back in Canada. My apartment I sublet whilst gone is extremely dirty, my lamps are broken… I just feel lost. Turns out I really settled down in Brighton. I made some great friends, found a community in the local CrossFit gym, and even had a boyfriend.

My time in England was so much more than a study abroad semester—it was a new dimension of life for 6 months. It was really great for my academia to study at a research-based Uni (University of Sussex) with different professors for a semester, but what I really took away from this experience was profound personal growth. When out of my dail...

Category: Student Blog

Pages